Selective relay of afferent sensory-induced action potentials from peripheral nerve to brain and the effects of electrical stimulation

Vijay Sadashivaiah, Pierre Sacre, Yun Guan, William S. Anderson, Sridevi V. Sarma

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Electrical stimulation of peripheral nerve fibers and dorsal column fibers is used to treat acute and chronic pain. Recent studies have shown that sensitized A-fibers maybe involved in the relay of pain information. These nerve fibers also carry sensory-induced action potentials (APs), such as proprioception, mechanoreception, etc. Electrical stimulation of these nerve fibers can result in interactions between sensory-induced APs and stimulation-induced APs. For example, the sensory-induced APs can collide with stimulus APs, and thus may never be relayed to the brain. In this study, we aimed to quantify the effects of stimulation frequency on these interactions. Specifically, we focused on the goal of stimulation to simultaneously (i) block noxious sensory signals while (ii) relaying innocuous sensory signals from the periphery to the brain via a myelinated nerve fiber. We defined a performance metric called the 'selective relay (SR) ' measure. Specifically, we constructed a tractable model of a nerve fiber that receives two inputs: the underlying sensory activity at the bottom of the fiber (noxious or innocuous), and the external stimulus applied to the middle of the fiber. We then defined relay reliability, R, as the percentage of sensory APs that make it to the top of the fiber. SR is then a product of relaying innocuous sensory information while blocking noxious pain stimuli, i.e., SR=Rsen (1-Rpain). We applied the two inputs to the fiber at various frequencies and analyzed relay reliability and then we studied selective relay assuming noxious and innocuous stimuli produce APs with distinct frequencies. We found that frequency stimulation between 50-100Hz effectively blocks relay of low-frequency pain signals, allowing mid-to-high frequency sensory signals to transmit to the brain.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publication40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2018
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Pages3606-3609
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9781538636466
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 26 2018
Event40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2018 - Honolulu, United States
Duration: Jul 18 2018Jul 21 2018

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBS
Volume2018-July
ISSN (Print)1557-170X

Other

Other40th Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, EMBC 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityHonolulu
Period7/18/187/21/18

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Signal Processing
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Health Informatics

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